Neurodiversity

Genetic Discovery Links Autism and Schizophrenia

Source: 
Nature Neuroscience
Date Published: 
August 4, 2013
Abstract: 

Nelson Freimer and colleagues at UCLA studied a population in an isolated area of Finland where Schizophrenia is more common than in the average Finnish population. In this small group, it was discovered that the presence of a deletion on part of chromosome 22 was much more prevalent than in the rest of the population. This deleted region normally contains an enzyme, TOP3B. This lack of TOP3B is also linked to disruptions that can lead to Fragile X Syndrome, showing there may be a biological link between Fragile X and Schizophrenia.

An article about this study can be found here:
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn23995-genetic-discovery-links-auti...

Brain Imaging Study Shows Decreased Production of Chemical Messenger GABA in Individuals with Autism

Source: 
Neuroimage
Date Published: 
May 23, 2013
Abstract: 

A new brain imaging study shows that children with autism have low levels of GABA, a chemical that keeps brain signals in check. This is the third study in two years that supports the theory of decreased production of GABA.

Study Finds Hyperconnectivity in Certain Brain Regions in Individuals with Autism.

Source: 
JAMA Psychiatry
Date Published: 
June 26, 2013
Abstract: 

During a brain study, researchers found that individuals with autism have specific areas of hyperconnectivity in the brain. This supports the theory that unique autistic behaviors stem from differences in brain wiring.